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Sam Adams penalty

Horsham, you blew it!

Hastings Utd 4-2 Horsham

Saturday 19th October

The Sussex derby always tends to be a tasty and moderately controversial affair with lots of talking points. Lewes last season, followed by Horsham and Crawley down this season. The first Sussex derby of the season took place when United welcomed Horsham, a side that John Maggs once managed and was successful with. With those two talking points going in to the game, plus the fact it’s the FA Trophy, there were many expectations of this game. Liam Willis reports.

United got off to a dreadful start, conceding in only the second minute. Sloppy defending from Richardson allowed Odunaike to cross low towards the unmarked ex-United player Jamie Cade in the centre who beat Pelling with ease. Horsham nearly doubled their lead seconds later when Billy Dunn’s free-kick smashed against the post. However Cade couldn’t repeat his second minute heroics and skyed the ball when an empty net was at his mercy.

From the resulting goal kick, United had their first opportunity. Jono Richardson, trying to make amends for his earlier error, made a blistering run down the right and forced a good save from Hunter, who stopped the ball flying in to the top corner of the net. The resulting corner was headed away, but only as far as Adams who won a free-kick. Adams took the free-kick himself and once again, this produced a fine save from Hunter.

The first half saw little more action, but Horsham were definitely dominant – goalie Pelling was forced to frustrate many opportunities and the first half finished slowly with United not really in the game. However, the second half was about to go off with a bang. Horsham nearly doubled their lead, seconds after the break. Odunaike’s free-kick forced a fine save from Pelling before it was beaten away. With Horsham clearly dominating, it seemed only a matter of time before they doubled their lead. Eight minutes in fact. A simple ball in from Dunn to the back post allowed Napper to head beyond Pelling to double United’s deficit.

Aladetoun replaced Bailo Camara for United, who began to pile on the pressure to counter being two down. A sloppy back pass from King was intercepted by Kenny Pogue, who successfully rounded the goalkeeper and pulled one back for the U’s.

Minutes after the restart, a dangerous challenge from Marriott on Sam Adams caused an almighty fracas. Pushing, shoving, the lot. Undisputedly the biggest at the Pilot Field since Wealdstone about five years ago (I was ball boy, I remember it clearly!). The resulting outcome saw three red cards. The first for United’s Tim Olorunda, closely followed by Horsham’s Marriott and then King – with other players lucky to stay on the field. After the drama, United continued to press for an equaliser. Aladetoun headed over from an Adams cross and Hunter gathered the ball after some pinball play in the penalty area.

A penalty was given to United after a handball from Charman, albeit a soft handball, but handball nonetheless. Sam Adams dispatched the penalty perfectly and United were suddenly level with little over ten minutes remaining. Jono Richardson was replaced by Jordan Woodley, who is on great form. This turned out to be the best substitution of the game. Woodley, who played and scored mid-week for the Under 21s unleashed a rocket from outside the area that flew past Hunter in to the back of the net – United had completely turned the game around and a special piece of individual brilliance from Woodley had put United ahead with five minutes to go.

A member of the Horsham back room staff was then sent off by the referee for what I can only understand was dissent. United had really piled on the pressure from Kenny Pogue’s goal, but they weren’t finished yet. Kenny Pogue found himself clear of the defence with only Hunter to beat, but Pogue tried to round the Horsham goalkeeper only to win a corner after a good save.

The corner produced nothing and deep into five minutes of added time, Danny Ellis found himself with the ball on the far left, with Pogue and Adams unmarked in the centre, but Ellis decided to go it alone and fire over. Seconds later, it appeared to be deja vu as Ellis found himself in the same position, this time with Pogue and Woodley unmarked in the centre. Ellis crossed to Pogue, who rounded the keeper and passed to Jordan Woodley, who simply couldn’t miss his second of the game.

The referee blew the whistle and it ended United 4-2 Horsham. An extraordinary second half produced the most phenomenal score line. My report can’t do the second half justice. If we get a more exciting second half at the Pilot Field for the rest of this season, we’ll all be very lucky!

United starting XI: Pelling, Slocombe, Richardson, Darby, Judge, Gilbert, Ellis, Olorunda, Pogue, Adams, Camara.
United subs: Woodley, Henson, Branco, Aladetoun, Burbridge.

Horsham starting XI: Hunter, Graves, Hamilton, King, Charman, Napper, Marriott, Harris, Dunn, Cade, Odunaike.
Horsham subs: Kedze, Hole, Collier, Blaney.

Man of the Match, as nominated for by Liam Willis: Jordan Woodley – outstanding effort from coming off the bench.
Attendance: 310

Liam Willis is also Hastings United Programme Co-Editor

Posted 12:40 Sunday, Oct 20, 2013 In: Sport


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